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CFPB: Fair Lending Still Applies After the Loan

An “advisory opinion” says federal laws don’t just protect borrowers from discrimination when applying for a loan – they protect borrowers forever.

WASHINGTON – The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) published an advisory opinion that says the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) also bars lenders from discriminating against customers after they have received a loan – not just during the application process.

“The CFPB is ramping up its efforts to issue guidance and advisory opinions to assist entities with understanding their obligations under the law,” says CFPB Director Rohit Chopra. “Today’s advisory opinion and accompanying analysis makes clear that anti-discrimination protections do not vanish once a customer obtains a loan.”

CFPB advisory opinions are one of many types of guidance documents the agency issues to provide information about the application of federal consumer financial laws.

The Equal Credit Opportunity Act bans credit discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, marital status and age. It also protects people receiving money from any public assistance program or exercising their rights under certain consumer protection laws.

CFPB says its latest advisory opinion and analysis clarifies that ECOA protects people from discrimination in all aspects of a credit arrangement, noting that it’s “consistent with a recent legal brief filed by the CFPB, the Federal Trade Commission, the Federal Reserve Board of Governors and the U.S. Department of Justice.

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